null After seeing so many different reviews out there and having been in and paddled the 2010 All Star and Rockstar M for extensive periods of time over the past five years, I decided to purchase the 2013 Allstar earlier this spring. My experiences in the new boat are both positive and negative. I'd like to first touch on some comparisons between the Rockstar and 2013 Allstar.
Firstly, the 2013 Allstar looks and feels significantly bigger then the Rockstar Medium. Weighing in at 150 lbs and 5’7’’, I was roughly 10-15 pounds heavier back when I demoed the Allstar and was actively paddling my Rockstar. The stern of the boat now holds a lot more volume then the Rockstar Medium and the front is much wider. The boat on a whole feels wider, especially when on a feature. It is also noticeable longer and feels and plays longer. For only one gallon difference in volume, I was and still am surprised at the performance differences between the two boats.
The new Allstar is a monster. The shape of the bow allows the paddler to have very clean initiations on loops. Less of a “scoop” in the bow gets the boat straight up in the air evertime, maximizing your height for big air. I’ve noticed little difference in swing weight between the two boats. Loops come around just as easily. This is surprising considering the additional length, but a great quality in the new boat. Secondly, the additional volume in the stern allows for bigger back loops, while the new hull design does allow you to stick moves more easily. It is definitely as retentive, if not more retentive then the Rockstar Medium. I’ve noticed phoenix monkey’s come around easier as well and it’s much easier to stick the moves. Nice and retentive. I’ve enjoyed the stability of the boat and river runners out there will enjoy it too. The new outfitting is more comfortable and lower seat makes the boat easier to roll. Playboaters may feel a lack of leverage do to the lower seat.
So, now for a few things that surprised me in performance compared to the Rockstar Medium. Weighing in at 150 lbs, I’d say this is honestly too much boat for someone my size. Especially a pure playboater. The seat is much to far back for a boater of my size to be able to truly utilize the looseness of the hull. Even with the seat pushed as far forward as possible, it is still around a half inch to far back. This makes keeping your edge in on McNasty’s a lot harder. The boat is also noticeably harder to link cartwheels, flat water and even in a hole. For me, this is the biggest limiting factor. If the seat could be moved farther forward, it might make it easier to initiate the cartwheel and link them. The boat feels huge when cartwheeling/split wheeling and the stern, being that much bigger gets in the way. Where I was once able to split wheel, cartwheel and combo those moves with loops and McNastys, I no longer am able because of the pure size of the boat and location of the seat. This is a huge disappointment.
If you’re on the fence in size but prefer river running over a pure playboat, this is your boat. If the playboater in you says I don’t care if I’m squirrely running down river, I like smaller more maneuverable, stick with your Rockstar. Especially if you are around my size.
null The 2013 All-star is a slightly more river-running oriented version of our world-dominating 2010 All-star with the best planing hull JK has ever made on it. The boat is a bit larger in size, in between an All-star and Super-star or Rockstar M and L, has more footroom, and a lower sitting position than the Rockstar series for easier rolling. For Full-on hole playing for expert paddlers the Rockstar is hard to beat. Some in-between size folks will be much better suited to this model though even with top-rated skills. And for wave surfing (big or small) , river running downriver play, or less-than-pro level abilities the 2013 Star series is a real winner. Clay Wright Team JK
Name: Sredenbach Review Date: 8/18/2013 11:11 am Rating:
Bought the All Star just over a month ago! I am 5'8" and 155lbs Wish I had bought this boat from the start, have a Zen 65 as well. Love this baby, rolls like a dream, feels super stable, outfitting is so comfy, makes it easy to get on waves and in holes! This is my first year kayaking and the All Star has been such a great boat for learning to surf waves and play in holes. I have been all over BC with this boat in the last month or so, from low water in the Green river to big Clearwater action. This boat is like a cork in bigger water, did my first Class 4 drops on the Clearwater and could not believe that I did not filp! So fun river running in this, I did get spanked on the Lillooet river last week, flow was 300 cubic meters per second, so you had to be on it as the hull speed on this boat is not very fast. One thing that I did find out, was that the GoPro mount rails can be broken off pretty easy, so look out for that. Other than that this boat rocks! Scott
Name: Mike Small Review Date: 7/21/2013 8:07 am Rating:
I think this boat is really good. I was graduating from a river play boat to a full time playboat and wanted something that was still suitable for downriver usage.... and this fits the bill. I have an all-star and I'm 190 lbs and 6"1'. Recommend for the paddler who's already confident and wants something a bit more sporty without going for a Rock Star.
The 2014 Jackson Star- Star, Allstar, Super Star is a user friendly, high performing freestyle boat yet! It is faster and looser than any play boat Jackson Kayak has had to offer. The overall view of the boat is sleek, sexy, and less stubby compared to previous models. This provides smoother cartwheels, bigger loops, and the balanced ends are easier to keep vertical. This makes hard moves easier and bigger. Jackson is making three sizes in the Star series: the Star, the All-Star, and the Super Star.